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Why Doesn’t My Story Read Like a Published Novel–A Reader’s Question

January 11, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Explanations for why a work in progress doesn’t read like a published novel. Includes areas to work on to improve a WIP.

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Story Inspiration From the News

December 30, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Explore today’s news to get inspiration for your fiction. Don’t hesitate to use tidbits from and elements of current stories in your own work.

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Consistency Can Trump Problems

December 16, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

When you can’t find rules for punctuation or grammar, sometimes simply choosing an option and then being consistent with that choice is all the answer you need.

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Nothing Words—Somehow

September 29, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Somehow is a nothing word that doesn’t reveal anything new about a character or an event. Cut uses of somehow from your stories.

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Nothing Words—People

September 11, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Like “thing,” “people” is a nothing word. A filler. But you can easily change the bland and generic “people” to a word that better fits the scene and the character using the word.

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Nothing Words—Thing

September 8, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Fiction can be made stronger by simply using strong and precise words in place of do-nothing filler words. Clear your stories of the filler word “thing.”

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Lessons From TV Shows and Movies

August 23, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Taking lessons, the positive and the negative, from movies and TV.

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Characters Don’t Live in a Vacuum

August 17, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Fill in your fictional landscape so characters don’t seem to be living in a vacuum, alone and oblivious to the people and objects surrounding them.

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Exclude Us From Novels

August 11, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

A look at words, punctuation, and writing elements that can be safely excised from novels, creating more memorable fiction.

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How Much Back Story Should I Include

July 27, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

A writer asks how much back story is too much.

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